At least three residents of a nursing home in Charles County, Maryland, have died from COVID-19, their families tell News4.
More than 100 seniors have tested positive for coronavirus in Charles County nursing facilities, and there is an outbreak of cases at Sagepoint Senior Living Services in La Plata, the county health department said.
Michael Hill, a resident of Sagepoint, died Sunday morning at age 70, his son, Tim Hill, told News4. Tim Hill said he is still waiting to find out his father's official cause of death.
"There needs to be a serious investigation of what's happened at Sagepoint in the last month to month and a half," Tim Hill said.
Another resident, Betty Lou Sams, 84, died at Sagepoint on Thursday.
"My mom, she was a wonderful mommy. She was loved by everyone that came in contact with her," Sams' daughter Barbara Buchanan said.
Buchanan told News4 that Sagepoint assured their family Sams was getting great care and was safe. But Sams, who had seven children, died days after testing positive for COVID-19.
"For us to all think that they were trying to protect our families, that they closed the doors so that our parents and our family members would not get sick — we actually ended up with the complete opposite. This is totally not fair to the families," Buchanan said.
Wilson "Sonny" Goldsmith also died Thursday. He was 80.
"We all knew that his time was getting shorter and shorter, however, as soon as that virus broke out, he was a sitting duck and he had a death sentence," his daughter Joan Goldsmith Bryan said.
She said her father wasn't initially isolated at Sagepoint because he wasn't showing symptoms, but his condition deteriorated. She was able to see him Thursday, just an hour before he died.
"He couldn't even call us from his cellphone because nobody had checked in or assisted him with getting his phone charged or anything. He was scared," Goldsmith Bryan said.
Families are demanding the state send a team to Sagepoint to assist the facility through the coronavirus pandemic.
Dr. Howard Haft, the Executive Director of the Maryland Primary Care program with the Maryland Department of Health, says there's no need for Gov. Larry Hogan to send help to Sagepoint.
"Every place that we see, certainly every place that we see here in Charles County, is doing an extraordinarily good job of doing all the things that they need to do," Haft said.
News4 has reached out to Sagepoint for comment but has not yet received a response.